South Jersey community gets new trees months after devastating tornado

Atlantic City Electric is donating 50 trees to the Wenonah Shade Tree Commission.
WENONAH, New Jersey (WPVI) -- The community is replenishing and restoring after an EF3 tornado hit Wenonah, New Jersey last September.

Atlantic City Electric is donating 50 trees to the Wenonah Shade Tree Commission.

"Today, we have a combination of crab apples, lilacs, redbuds, plums, some white pink dogwoods," said Gary Odenbrett of the Wenonah Shade Tree Commission, as he consulted his clipboard.

"The town was crippled for over a week," Odenbrett said recalling the storm damage. "It probably took out close to 300 street trees and well over 1,000 personal property trees."

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There was significant storm damage in Wenonah, Gloucester County after the remnants of Hurricane Ida swept across the region.

The Kinmonth Family had been home eating dinner before the tornado hit. They heard the winds and rushed to the basement.

When they emerged and all were safe, trees were torn across their property.

"I couldn't see my driveway. I couldn't see my front yard. I couldn't get to my backyard. My car- all of our cars- were covered," said Brandi Kinmonth.

In the days that followed, Atlantic City Electric worked around the clock clearing and restoring power.

"This community saw destruction and lost a lot, and so Atlantic City Electric is part of that community. This is our home. Our employees live and work in these communities, and so it's important for us to give back to this area," said Amber Burruezo of Atlantic City Electric.

The donation will help replace trees lost during the tornado as well as some trimmed for current projects and preventive maintenance.

Turf Construction helped with this week's delivery, right in time for Arbor Day on Friday.

The donation is separated into two deliveries of 25. The next one takes place in the fall.

"It made your heart a little- swell up a little bit because we're just so grateful to have the shade and the maturity come back. And just to be reminded that we did have that and it will come back. It will grow again," Kinmonth said.
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